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Language: Instinctive or Learned? Over the course of time the topic of language has been a catalyst for many discussions and debates as to if it is learned throughout one’s life, or is it a hard copy instinct the one is born with. Many scientists and writers in the humanities field have their own opinions as to what they believe about language and its plight in human society. One writer challenges many of our educators and scholars today by expressing his thoughts on the instinct to understand, learn, and speak language. In The Language Instinct: How the Mind Creates Language, Steven Pinker maintains that language is not something that we learn like the way we learn how to tell time or learn about the presidents. Rather, Pinker suggests that the essence of language is already with us when we are brought into the world. You see this when Pinker argues, “Instead, it is a distinct piece of the biological makeup of our brain”(4). He uses metaphors and similes to further qualify his arguments. Pinker compares the idea that people know how to talk in the same sense that spiders know how to spin webs. The activity or practice of spinning webs was not invented by any one spider, but rather is an instinctive quality that spiders have much like humans and language. Pinker goes on to comment that a young child’s knowledge of language and grammar is more refined than any artificial language system used by any advanced technology computer aided programs. Pinker’s views that he establishes about language are in accordance with other notable figures in the humanities field. A man by the name of Noam Chomsky has views that are representative of the point Pinker is trying to convey: language is a biological makeup of the brain. As a professor of linguistics at MIT, Chomsky imparted sound arguments as to the nature of language. Chomsky has suggested the fact that every sentence that a human speaks or comprehend...

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